Women show how far they've come
A group of women from different cultures and backgrounds, who have been brought together by a unique project, are celebrating everything they have achieved.
Set up by Step Forward Tees Valley and Nur Fitness, the group provides friendship, exercise and other opportunities to women from the BAME community across Teesside who feel isolated.
The women, who are from various countries including; Arabian, Kurdistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Iraq, Bangladesh, India, Turkish, and Afghanistan, get the chance to make connections outside their home and in the towns where they now live.
They have taken English and maths courses, improved their digital skills, enjoyed arts and crafts and walks in the local area. Thanks to the group they have seen their self-confidence grow and have overcome cultural and language barriers. The women have also shared their own cultures, styles of living, dancing and cooking.
To celebrate what the women have achieved, a special event is taking place on Monday 23 September at Nur Fitness in Middlesbrough. The women will share what the group has meant to them and will be presented with certificates to mark their various achievements.
Shazia Noor from Nur Fitness, said: “It has been an inspiring four months journey with these ladies, from when they came in, to where they are now. The best part for us has been seeing the women realise their own strengths and abilities. It has been so rewarding for us to be a small part of making their lives happier.”
Step Forward Tees Valley’s work with Nur Fitness was recognised at last year’s North East Equality Awards when it won the award for best organisation with 50-200 staff.
Andrea Johnson, project manager from Step Forward Tees Valley, said: “It has been incredible to see the transformation and impact that this project has had on the lives of local women, their families and local communities. Social inclusion is central to increasing participation in society to empower individuals to progress into learning and employment. The Step Forward Tees Valley programme is committed to helping people overcome the barriers they have that prevent realizing their full potential.”
Step Forward Tees Valley gives bespoke one-to-one support to people to help them overcome issues that are stopping them finding work or training. Issues can include ill health; low self confidence; depression; lack of skills; substance misuse.